Marlies Win In Rockford

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
January 20 2014 05:24PM

 

(Photo courtesy of the Rockford IceHogs Twitter)

The Toronto Marlies have a history of sputtering during long road trips. Even this year, their Royal Winter Fair-fuelled departure saw them drop four of six games, cementing the cancelling out of a hot start. Maybe it's bad luck, maybe they make a slight mistake in travel arrangements that makes them 0.6% more tired, or maybe there's something in the air at Ricoh Coliseum that makes them better for a couple of days.

This time around, as their home ice plays the part of "giant swimming pool" for the Boat Show, things actually look kind of positive. Going into Rockford, the Marlies had a 3-0-1 record over nine days, with a --- loss to St. Johns being the only blemish. The mission today? Keep the good times rolling, and slightly ruin the day of the thousands of local school children in attendance. They did just that, winning 3-2. 

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Leafs Swap Ashton, Holland

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
January 08 2014 05:06PM

Looking for a way to shake things up after a pair of, lets be blunt, bad games against a pair of New York teams, the Toronto Maple Leafs have swapped around some of their youth, calling up winger Carter Ashton from the Toronto Marlies, and sending Peter Holland in his place.

Opinions are mixed regarding this decision (aren't they always?), and it's safe to argue in either direction. Here's a bit of reasoning for both sides of the coin. 

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POSTGAME - Islanderp

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
January 07 2014 08:50PM

 

If there's a positive that I can take out of a game like this, it's that I'm reallllllly happy that John Tavares is going to play for Team Canada next month. He's become so creative, and so smart, and is now tied for second in league scoring. Why now? Because he scored three points tonight. Why did he score three points tonight? Because the Toronto Maple Leafs allowed three or more goals. Two more, to be exact, as the Leafs dropped this one by a score of 5-3. 

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A Trip To Michigan: Part 1

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
January 05 2014 12:31AM

The Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs spent this past week celebrating the game of hockey in the best way they saw fit; by taking the sport back to its roots and playing a bunch of games outdoors. Representing The Leafs Nation for a few days, and Pension Plan Puppets for another, I made my way and crossed the border for a few days to see what the fuss was about. The following is part one of several posts detailing my trip.

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Money Well Spent

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
December 28 2013 09:32AM

TSN is reporting this morning that the Toronto Maple Leafs and Dion Phaneuf are extremely close to putting pen to paper on a deal that would pay Dion Phaneuf $49 million dollars, give or take a few bucks, over the next seven years, giving a cap hit of $7,000,000 a season. Phaneuf is a polarizing figure amongst Leafs fans, with many seeing strong ability in him, and others thinking he's the bane of the team's existance.

I wrote this article in November to show his qualities, and that a contract in this range (then rumoured to be 7x7.15) would be more than reasonable compared to his peers in the cap era. This year, Phaneuf is again leading the league in Quality of Competition faced despite poor Quality of Teammates, and has been fantastic at moving the puck into the other team's zone (40.3% offensive zone starts, 47.3% OZ finishes). His production is a bit down, due to a falling even strength shooting percentage, but this was to be expected for himself and much of the rest of the team, many of whom set career highs. It's also worth noting that the defensive core as a whole has had production issues this year, meaning it could be a bit systems based as well.

Other stats also line up with last year's, which were used in this article for the sake of reasonable sample sizes. As such, i'm confident in this still being applicable as a fair evaluation of his contract situation. Enjoy!

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